I have a brother-in-law who has an 8 1/2 month old daughter. She weighs 13#s. The guy has a complex or something about having an overweight child so he and his wife limit the baby's bottles. I'd like to talk to them about it, not sure if it will do any good though. they swear up and down their Dr. says she'd fine but that's hard for me to believe. What health risks are they taking by doing this? I'd like to be able to speak somewhat intelligently about it when talking to him and try to get him to see the light.
Are you sure he is limiting the number of bottles she has? The reason I ask is because my neice is 3 1/2 and only weighs around 25lbs. She is in the 4th percentile for her weight, but she eats more than any of my children 2 of which hang out in the 75th percentile. My 3rd hangs out in the 25th percentile for his age and he eats more than his siblings combined at every meal and has snack times the other kids don't.
If he is in fact limiting her intake of food because he fears that she'll be overweight you need to step in. A child her age should be eating whenever she is hungry and as much as she wants. Limiting her intake may cause health and developmental problems. If you are SURE that they are limiting and they won't listen to you I would report them.
Absolutely sure that's what he's doing. My wife's father told us that's what was going on. At thanksgiving they had come over for lunch. My wife and I have a 3 month old and she was feeding him. Their daughter, the 8 1/2 month old wanted a bottle too and they refused to give her one. My wife and her sister told them that she was hungry. He just said "No she's not!" then they gathered up their stuff and they left. His wife does the same thing to herself. He wants a thin wife so she barely eats so she can stay thing. Weird thing is he's not thin, he's prolly 5'11 and weighs around 220. He likes his beer and food.
1 other thing, not sure if it's got anything to do with it but she'll be 9 months in a week I think and she is just now able to sit up some.
They could easily be interconnected. I know they are family and it could cause horrible tension or even sever some ties, but I would step in on that baby's behalf now. The question I would ask myself in this position now is whether to talk to them, report them to CPS or to contact their family doctor.
It seems that talking to them might not be the way to go since they ran out when confronted and the wife does it to herself too. But please do something soon!
I agree to report them to CPS, her weight may be fine on the chart, but if it is due to with-holding food then it really isn't fine (and the Dr. probably doens't know they are limiting her intake). You can report CPS annonmously if you like.
If you think the parents will read it, Get them the book "How to get your kid to eat by not too much" by Ellyn Satter. It starts with infancy and goes to adulthood. The basic premis is that the adult offers healthy food, the child decides how much to eat. If you try to control how much they eat they may become food obsessed, overweight (because they sneak food whenever they can) or develop an eating disorder. If the parents have the right information they may change tacticts - I hope.
State Certified Early Childhood Special Education Teacher
New Mom as of March 2009!